Drew Barrymore Thinks Unrealistic Self-Care Routines Can Be “Irritating”

Forget bubble baths and massages — the multi-hyphenate and mother of two is all about keeping her home (and her sanity) in line with the help of her latest partnership with Grove Collaborative.

Drew Barrymore Fresh Horizons Grove Co.

Grove Collaborative

Drew Barrymore will be the first to admit that she didn’t have her shit together a few years ago — regardless of how it may have looked from the outside. Between raising her two daughters, Olive and Frankie, hosting The Drew Barrymore Show, and navigating an utterly chaotic work schedule, she found that daily household tasks were getting lost or forgotten, leaving her even more stressed heading into each day. 

“I'd be running around saying, ‘Where's that shoe? Where's that thing?’” Barrymore tells InStyle of her former morning routine. 

But what’s changed? A complete overhaul of her views on self-care, Barrymore shares, switching the focus away from the unrealistic, commercialized versions of pampering (bubble baths, manicures, facials — even shaving her legs, the actress admits) and towards tasks that bring clarity, ease, and simplicity into her otherwise mayhem-filled day-to-day.

“Having less, having systems, making a commitment to live a more peaceful life through less chaos, that's my version of self-care,” Barrymore says. “Because the whole massage thing, I never get massages. My neck feels like steel. Every time someone touches it, they're like, ‘Oh, are you stressed?’ I'm like, ‘What do you think?! We're all stressed! That's the dumbest question I've ever heard! You just stressed me out more!’”

Drew Barrymore Fresh Horizons Grove Co.

Grove Collaborative

It’s exactly this outlook that made her new venture with Grove Collaborative feel all the more right. After serving as a Global Brand + Sustainability Advocate for nearly a year — “I was a Grove aficionado before they asked me to join forces with them,” Barrymore says of her reasoning behind the partnership— the talk show host decided to celebrate the anniversary of her collaboration by launching her first-ever 11-product collection with Grove (available to shop now) aimed at cutting back on single-use plastic waste in the most Drew Barrymore way possible. 

Featuring a variety of household essentials ranging from soy candles to the Ultimate Dishsoap (complete with cheery yellow reusable dispensers, obviously), the Fresh Horizons collection is here to help you prepare for a greener, cleaner spring by combining quality products with another one Drew’s many loves: fun, intentional aesthetics.

“I'm a really big aesthetics person, too,” Barrymore says. “That really does spark joy for me, and I loved not only the way the Grove products worked and the whole brand ethos, but I just love the look of it. It made me so happy, and it's such a beautiful company.”

All in all, Barrymore’s goal was to create products that look just as good sitting on your counter as they do when they’re cleaning them, which all circles back to the idea that less truly is more — in relation to both the cleaning goods you use and the general feng shui of your home. 

“It's about just not overstuffing [your home] like a turducken, but bringing clarity and cleanliness, and knowing where things are and using best practice,” Barrymore says. “Having your home be a reminder that you're on the right track is really great, because when you're using a bunch of bad stuff or you're eating a bunch of bad stuff or your home is a hot mess, you don't feel good inside your head.”

 Ahead, Drew Barrymore chats with InStyle about what first sparked her interest in sustainability, which one product she’d gift to her favorite talk show guests, and what she really thought about the internet’s reaction to her viral window TikTok.

Drew Barrymore Fresh Horizons Grove Co.

Grove Collaborative

Before partnering with Grove Collaborative, what made you originally interested in bringing sustainable, green products into your home?

Honestly, it was because of my best friend who has been barking at me [to become more sustainable] for 25 years. I needed to do something for her that showed how appreciative I was and I said, "Instead of getting you something that you don't want or need, I'm going to become a sustainable person in order to say thank you." 

That's how my journey started, and it started with a cup and a reusable straw. And then it was my sponge, my biodegradable toothpick flossers, my reading Danny Seo's magazine and doing short cycles on my wash, using all the Grove products. I did a complete overhaul of every product in my house, all Grove all the time, and thinking about the way I ran the water, or how recycling is such a myth; thank you, Grove, for dispelling that.

In addition to your passion for sustainable home products, you’ve also been vocal about your passion for home renovation (which gave us that iconic window TikTok). What’s it been like to get to share that hobby with so many people online?

I never had any idea that [the window TikTok] would ever catch anyone's attention. I just knew [the window] was there, and I've had that place for a few years, and every day I would fester over it. I was like, "There's a goddamned window under there. I know it!" And there was. That kitchen has been a crazy passion project, but the day it was done and I got to put all my Grove products in there, that just felt very fulfilling.

One of my favorite things about home renovation is when you strip a room down bare, then get to re-put it back together extremely edited and thoughtfully. You realize that you need a lot less than you think you do, and then those little things stand out. Eventually, everything I have, every corner becomes a hoarder's corner, but I try to start with that minimalist intention. When you clean, when you organize, when you get it back to a more pared-down look, which takes a lather-rinse-repeat effort on a weekly basis, I just notice how much peace is created. How good it feels while you're holding on to organization and mental wellness and systems.

Speaking of peace, your line also has two scented candles that can help create a huge sense of peace when unwinding after a long day. Do you have any other ways that you enjoy unwinding or practicing self-care?

No. Self-care and I are not friends. My legs aren't shaven. I try to clip my nails down because I don't like dirt under them. I try to work out three times a week with girlfriends, and I usually make it two days a week, which is something. Three days a week is the goal. Sometimes, if I have time, I can do four days a week. It's just that there's no time. 

Self-care for me is having my kids' stuff organized to get out the door in the morning, lined up. That's self-care. It doesn't seem like it, but it is, because this fucking bubble bath approach is so irritating. That doesn't bring me self-care or joy. Having my kids' stuff in a system, lined up, their shoes and their jackets and their backpacks, that makes me feel like I won the morning.

What was your reasoning behind including candles in the line?

Well, candles are definitely a part of my self-care. I think they're also an aesthetic thing. I think they're also ritualistic. I also do therapy every week. In fact, I have my session today. That is self-care. I think for me it's all about spatial aesthetic systems. When it comes to pampering, that's where I think I get a little irritable, because I don't have the time for it. Therefore, what am I? A failure because I'm not fucking getting massages and mani-pedis? Well, shit, then I guess I am. But I do love candles so much. 

How did you go about choosing the two scents, Palm Leaf Mist and Island Orchid?

The scents were really important. Ever since I started Flower Beauty [my cosmetics line], I've been studying the art of making fragrances for over a decade. I did Kaleidoscope, which is where you blind-test hundreds of reports to understand what it is that you like and don't like about scents, and what pairs well together. When I came into making these scents, I felt educated and prepared, and I know that there are very much two different customers in that there's a floral-fruity person and there's a woody-hippie person like me.

If you had to give every guest on The Drew Barrymore Show any one product from your line to start them off on their sustainability journey, which one would it be?

That's so fun and tough, because a part of me wants to say a candle because I like the way the candles came out: simple, pretty, great scents. So, I'll go with candle, but try to get the European dishcloths, because I use them for everything. 

I don't know if you're supposed to do this, but I put mine in the dishwasher, and they come out anew every time. I can get rid of my paper towels, I can not do the sponges as much anymore. It's sort of taken over everything. And I think that shows the most pattern on it, too. So, those would be my two, and if you have to pick one, I'll pick the candle.

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